Appreciating the uglyness of (Spanish) vernacular architecture

José Fariña is writing about Galicia, but his comments are generally applicable: form follows function, so rural flight and the conversion of C20th smallholding culture into industrial agriculture and bear forests will inevitably lead to the entire replacement of the gloriously heterogeneous building culture of the past by drab "rural" 2nd home estates of Asterix […]

Incompatibility of science and corrupt society

This lovely story of a Castilla y León government tender for a small investigative boat which already included the name of the winner, a company linked to the governing party, reminded me of this beautiful idea re (some of) the Greeks in Martha's dad's book: Travel alone was not enough to create ‘science’. These thinkers […]

Why does the Chartres cathedral renovation have to be so damn cautious?

Martin Filler -(faux?) outraged New York dandy- is certainly a giggle. If he had any serious interest in France or the Gothic he'd know that the sexless late-republican yellowing of major churches has been going on for some time now. (If all those black virgins are to be white once more, then surely we also […]

Christmas slum evictions around Montcada

“No tenemos conocimiento de que viva nadie, sí de la existencia de construcciones”, asegura un portavoz municipal. Neither will they surely have noticed the far greater numbers of people living in shanties and mud along the other bank of the river - the same pattern is to be found along chunks of the Llobregat, and […] 1 comment, inc Tom: I understand them building there. After all, the gypsy neighbourhood down the road was all unlicense

Das Scroll und Scream Kitschin' Kabinett des Dr Kalebeul

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Visitors booked

  • Brer Rabid: "pseudo-historic revisionism, ... pack of lies and bullshit, ... Catalanophobe resentment of Spanish nationalism (past and present) apologist"
  • Don Colin: "gnomic"
  • The Pox: "Franco's Little Helper"
  • La Vanguardia wonders whether Kalebeul is a CIA operation
  • Mark Liberman: "a treat"
  • Significant other: "What was that hairy weirdo on about? What blog?"


The use of phoney billing cooperatives by Spanish freelancers to avoid paying exorbitant autónomo social security contributions


This is not turning into a fucked translators blog, but it is said that freelance translation (or journalism, or such) in Spain is born of the same lunatic heroism that impels people to buy houses there or to walk its pavements. The numbers and rule...

Statistically speaking I’ve got my drinking about right

Says a Finn (articles). Kudos to anyone who can identify the painting, and to Kari Poikolainen for standing in front of it. Now for the season of apocalyptic deluges and painful droughts.